Coursera – Surviving Disruptive Technologies

university-of-MarilandQuite interesting course with many useful examples to illustrate main concepts.  The main point of the course is increasing pace of technological change and the need to adapt to the change to… survive.  Every organization will experience change in technologies; some will survive and some will perish.  The class gives a guide on typical process of evaluation of disruptive technologies and options of adaptation.

Survivor-model

Interesting: profitable organizations with a strong brand have a “disadvantage” of their own profitability.  When the disruptive technology appears, it is difficult to make changes as the success of the company is rather obvious.  As it is more difficult for public companies to make changes (as the expectation for steady growth can create unnecessary pressure), the instructor mentioned Michael Dell’s attempt to make his company private to implement necessary changes.

Another interesting point:  successful companies are able to focus on their core strengths very well, their organization designed to be efficient and productive.  This particular approach hurts chances for their transformation – the success breeds rigidity necessary for focusing on profitability, in expense of flexibility vital for the future survival of the company.

Sunk-costs

Organizational structure also needs to change, even if it has been difficult to do for centuries 🙂

org-change

Survival guide:

  • Denying a disruption will affect you is dangerous
  • An innovation may not be impressive (at first)
  • Imagine the Worst Possible Scenario
  • Develop the strategy to survive the Worst Possible Scenario
  • Be bold
  • Change the organization (even if it has been hard topic for over 500 years 😉 )
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